by Dan Verbin
The Amadeu Antonio Stiftung Foundation is ending its partnership with the ice cream maker saying its boycott promotes anti-Semitism.
A German NGO that promotes human rights while combating far right extremism, anti-Semitism and racism has denounced Ben & Jerry’s for their boycott of Judea and Samaria, and is halting their partnership with the group.
In an open letter to Ben & Jerry’s, the Amadeu Antonio Stiftung Foundation called out the ice cream company for their boycott that “doesn’t solve any conflicts, but stirs hate and promotes anti-Semitism.”
“We cannot comprehend the decision to boycott Israel in this way,” they wrote. “We are especially disappointed that the company is following the line of the anti-Semitic boycott movement BDS.”
The foundation noted that boycott movements ”demonize and delegitimize the state of Israel and thus spread Israel-related anti-Semitism” while at the same time applying a wholly different standard to Israel than they do to terror groups like Hamas or the corrupt regime of the PA, which both violate human rights and “are the very opposite of anything that can be considered progressive or emancipatory.”
“The origins and allies of the boycott movements are, among others, terrorist, Islamist organizations. Their aims accept the eradication of the Jewish state, and their hatred of Jews exists regardless of said Jews’ stance on Israel. This is sheer anti-Semitism and has nothing to do with any supposed criticism of Israeli government policy. Liberal-left and anti-racist principles are incompatible with this stance,” they wrote.
They also remarked that a boycott does nothing to help anyone in Israel – Jews or Arabs – and instead spreads hatred under the pretext of “criticism of Israel” and “[poisons] the climate against Jews.”
The foundation also expressed their concern that Ben & Jerry’s is not speaking out against rising anti-Semitism experienced by Jews across the world, not only from the far right but “from the middle of society, from radical Islamic circles and from so-called critics of Israel on the left. “
“We find it inexcusable to participate in campaigns that promote this development and escalate anti-Semitism,” they wrote. “That you have… joined the chorus of those who portray Israel as some great evil, completely oblivious to the overall context of the region’s history and the conflict, is a slap in the face to all who experience anti-Semitism on a daily basis.”
They added that they won’t tolerate anti-Semitism being overlooked or simply defined as “so-called criticism of Israel.”
“The Amadeu Antonio Foundation does not cooperate with anti-Semitic groups or activists. A partnership with you is only possible for us if we share these principles,” they concluded. “Under these circumstances, we will therefore halt our cooperation with Ben & Jerry’s.”